If you’ve owned a food business or been involved in the food and restaurant industries for some time, you probably already know about the perils of pest infestations.
Pests such as insects and small rodents will look for places that are warm, safe, and full of food and water. It makes sense that a restaurant would be a hotspot for pest activity. It’s so important to have a plan in place to prevent a pest infestation from happening. Using a pest management restaurant checklist is a great way to ensure operational excellence and compliance with law in regards to food and health safety.
If you’re a bit lost on where to start with a pest monitoring checklist, don’t worry. We’ll break it all down for you.
Why would I need to have an integrated pest management checklist?
Pest activity monitoring is a process that all restaurants should utilize. Using a checklist that details your daily routine and activities for the purpose of preventing pest infestations makes the process of implementing those activities much easier. Plus, checklists provide a point of accountability in case something is not done or is not done properly.
Structuring and designing your integrated pest management checklist
An integrated pest management checklist will involve some or all of the following activities:
- Ensure that dumpsters are sealed properly.
- Ensure that the area around the dumpster is free of excess debris.
- Check for evidence of pests (such as cockroaches, mice, ants, etc.) around the dumpster.
- Close all windows, window screens, and vents are closed or covered before leaving the building or closing for the night.
- Check that the door stripping, windows, and screens are free of damage.
- Check for evidence of pests around building openings.
- Ensure that all water sources (faucets, sprinklers, etc.) are not leaking, dripping, or causing standing water.
- Keep all garbage containers lidded and take out the trash regularly.
- Place rodent bait stations in the corners of the kitchen and check them regularly.
- Check for evidence of pests in the kitchen and behind the line.
- Sweep, mop, and dry the floors of the kitchen several times a day.
- Ensure that the refrigerators, dishwashers, sinks, and freezers are not leaking water underneath and are clean and dry.
- Ensure that countertops, shelves, cabinets, and other surfaces in the kitchen are cleaned and disinfected regularly.
- Ensure that all garbage cans have plastic liners and are regularly cleaned.
- Remove cardboard boxes and discarded packaging from the kitchen as soon as possible.
- Ensure that your stoves and ovens are free of burnt food scraps and grease.
- Store all food products, including bulk products, in tightly sealed containers. Ensure that are store away from the floor and not against the walls.
- Check your bathrooms for evidence of pests, as well as evidence of mold, cracks, or gaps between pipes.
- Clean and disinfect the bathrooms several times per day.
What should this Integrated pest management checklist contain?
There are a few things that your checklist should always contain, though you may decide to add some additional boxes to your checklist as needed.
To start, there should be boxes that can be checked as done, not done, or N/A. Each and every activity that you include in your checklist should also have a place for the employee to put their name and signature. A line or two after each activity should be reserved for any notes.
What are the goals of an integrated pest management checklist?
Integrated pest management checklists are used with the goal of preventing any form of pest infestation in the building of your restaurant. These checklists are also used for the greater goal of overall food and health safety for your customers and staff.
Why using such a checklist would be beneficial for your business?
Being able to prevent pest infestations is highly beneficial. Dealing with a pest infestation after it has already begun can be extremely costly in terms of exterminators, can result in abrupt restaurant closings, failed health inspection exams, and negative reviews for your restaurant online. If using a checklist on a daily basis can prevent this, it’s obviously quite beneficial!
Why using digital for such a checklist would be beneficial for your business?
Digitizing your daily checklists can make it easier to track your records. Plus, it removes the need for paper, which can be messy and unorganized. A digital platform for tracking your staff’s daily efforts to prevent pests can be very convenient for you and your staff as well. If you’re interested in a third-party platform to implement an integrated pest management checklist for your business, get in touch with Qualizy today!
How was our guide to integrated pest management checklists? Tell us how you’ve implemented pest checklists into your business in the comments below.